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MARKET TOWNS OF SURREY (from SDUK Penny Cyclopedia)

Bermondsey in 1842

Bermondsey is on the south bank of the Thames, and lies between Southwark on the west and Rotherhithe on the east. The area of the parish is 620 acres. This parish is noticed in 'Domesday', where it is called Bermundeseye : it had a Cluniac priory, founded by Aylwin Child, a citizen of London, in 1082 : the yearly revenues at the dissolution were £548, 2 shillings, 3 pence and 3 farthings gross, or £474, 14 shillings, 4 pence and 3 farthings clear. Bermondsey now consists of a number of paved streets and roads with flagged footpaths, lined in some few parts with tolerably good houses, but more commonly by others of an inferior description. The old church is a building of little architectural pretension ; but there is a new church (St. James's) of good appearance, and there are some dissenting meeting-houses. The population in 1831 was 29,741. Near the water-side there are wharfs, and the various trades connected with shipping are carried on ; and in that part of the parish which lies back from the river there are many tan-yards. There is a considerable extent of ground occupied by market-gardens. The London and Greenwich Railroad runs through the parish.

The living is a rectory, of the clear yearly value of £514, with a glebe-house : the perpetual curacy of St. James's Church, to which the rector presents, is of the clear yearly value of £300.

There were in 1833, ninety-one day-schools of all kinds, including an infant-school with 60 children, namely, 35 boys and 25 girls ; the Bermondsey Free-school, supported by endowment, with 80 boys ; and six schools supported by subscription, namely, the United Charity-School, with 193 boys, 50 of whom were clothed by the institution ; another charity-school with 126 girls ; a Lancasterian school with 300 boys; two Catholic schools, with 150 boys and 100 girls ; and another school with 20 boys and 32 girls. There were also five Sunday-schools. Rotherhithe and Bermondsey are, for parliamentary purposes, included in the borough of Southwark.